The East African

Book ID 522

See also

The East African,
Extract Author: Premy Kibanga
Extract Date: 1999 April 26 - May 5

Army Worms May Invade Kenya from Tanzania in May

The EastAfrican

Army Worms which have destroyed crops in parts of northern Tanzania will invade Kenya in three weeks, according to experts monitoring their movement.

The worms, which attack cereals, have thwarted Tanzania's efforts to contain them and will hit Kenya hard, Mr Wilfred Mushobozi, a national Army Worms forecaster based in Arusha, told The EastAfrica.

Prediction are that the African Army Worms, which have invaded thousands of hectares of crops in northern Tanzania, including maize, will enter Kenya by the second week of May as they reach the secondary stage of infestation.

Mr Mushobozi said the areas which will be most affected as the worms enter the secondary breeding stage include the Serengeti plains, Ngorongoro conservation area, Rombo and Hai districts in Kilimanjaro region and Tarime district in Mara region, all of which border Kenya.

According to Mr Mushobozi, the worms usually appear between November and late January but because of weather changes they came in January and February. They were first spotted in central Tanzania and severely affected Dodoma, Morogoro, Tanga, Kilimanjaro, Arusha, Singida and Mwanza regions. Crop yields are expected to fall because of the destruction wrought by the worms, coupled with poor rains.

Mr Mushobozi said the government was warned about the impending invasion at the beginning of February and some regions such as Dodoma and Morogoro took the warning seriously, alerting their farmers and averting damage to paddy farms.

The worms can be easily controlled with pesticides at the egg and larvae stage, before they develop into pupae and become moths.

Researchers at the Tropical Pesticides Research Institute in Arusha said the first moths were trapped in October last year.

Extract ID: 1419

external link

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The East African,
Extract Author: Zephania Ubwani
Extract Date: October 15, 1999

Wildlife Information Centre for Arusha

Copyright (c) 1999 The East African. Distributed via Africa News Online (www.africanews.org).

A wildlife conservation information centre will be set up in Arusha for use by tourists, wildlife researchers and the public.

The centre, being established by the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority, is expected to be opened before the end of the year.

Nearly 20 per cent of the Tanzania's 880,000 sq km surface area is under some form of conservation.

The conservator of the Ngorongoro area, Mr. Emmanuel Chausi, said the Arusha centre would be stocked with brochures, books, magazines, maps as well as video-cassettes and photographs depicting aspects of wildlife conservation. It will also advise visitors on wildlife safaris within the East African region.

The Ngorongoro authority, which administers the 8,300 sq km Ngorongoro Conservation Area in Arusha region, has so far spent Tsh40 million ($50,000) renovating a building in downtown Arusha which will house the centre. However, the conservator said the cost of the setting up of the centre would be much higher.

Mr. Chausi said the move had been prompted by the sharp increase in tourists visiting Tanzania's northern wildlife parks and conservation areas that include the world renowned Ngorongoro Crater recently listed as a World Heritage Site.

"There have been many inquiries about Ngorongoro and other game attractions like the Serengeti park by tourists. This facility will provide tourists with prior information before visiting the sites," Mr. Chausi said.

With its finest blend of landscapes, wildlife, the pastoral Maasai and archaeological sites, Ngorongoro is one of the leading tourist's attractions in Tanzania where tourism has seen fastest growth in recent years.

The main attraction is the 250 sq-km Ngorongoro Crator spanning a 23-km radius located some 160 km west of Arusha - that constitutes a mountain formation Geographers describe as a huge caldera or collapsed volcano.

At the depth of 600 metres from rim to bottom, the crater is a spectacular scenery with an abundance of wildlife that combine to make it a wonder of the natural world. Adjacent to it is the Olduvai Gorge the site where the famous skull of the nutcracker man (Australopithecus boisei) was excavated in 1959 as well as the 3.6 million-year-old Laetoli footprints.

Wildlife experts say the crater alone has over 20,000 large animals including some of Tanzania's last remaining black rhino. Other large grazing animals include wildebeest, zebra, giraffes, buffalo and gazelles, and it is also home to lions

Figures released by the Tanzania Division in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism indicated that some 175,476 tourists visited NCA in 1998/99 earning the Authority some US$ 5.7 million (Tshs 3.9 billion).

That was an increase of 35.7 per cent in tourist flow compared to 155,289 tourists recorded in 1997/98 generating some $4.2 million (Tshs 2.9 billion). It is estimated that the Authority will collect some $6.85 million (Tshs 4.8 billion) during the 1999/2000 season.

The main competitor to NCA in tourist attraction in Tanzania is the 12 game parks of the Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA), that dot the country. During 1998/99 TANAPA attracted 269,902 tourists in its parks earning it $13.1 million (Tshs 9.1 billion).

Extract ID: 3210

See also

The East African,
Extract Date: 1999 November 8

A Leader of Poor People

Copyright (c) 1999 The East African. Distributed via Africa News Online (www.africanews.org).

Dar-es-Salaam - If dead men were allowed a brief return to earth, Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere, who died in London on October 14 and was buried at his Butiama home village in Mara Region on October 23, would have protested vehemently at all the fuss being made over his illness, death, funeral and burial.

Ever a modest man, Mwalimu would have been acutely embarrassed by the overwhelming outpouring of grief, the moving eulogies, the emotionally-charged mourning, and the massive turnouts for the reception of his body at the Dar-es- Salaam International Airport, as well as during the state funeral and interment.

Nyerere would similarly have objected to the propositions to rename Dar-es- Salaam city, a university and Lake Victoria after him. He always did have an aversion to praise singing.

The tens of thousands of mourners who thronged Nyerere's residence at Msasani on the outskirts of Dar and his village home at Butiama got glimpses of the simplicity of Mwalimu as a family man, a simplicity in inverse proportion to his gigantic stature as national leader and statesman.

In sharp contrast to the likes of the deceased Ivorian and Zairean rulers, Felix Houphouet-Boigny and Mobutu Sese Seko, respectively, who built grandiose structures in their home villages, mourners were graphically reminded in Butiama of the description of Nyerere as a leader of poor people.

Frantic, eleventh-hour attempts had to be made to give the Msasani house a fresh coat of paint. Nyerere himself couldn't be bothered about the near- derelict state of the residence of a 'mere' retired president, when hospitals were short of drugs and schools of textbooks.

During the second and last leg of Nyerere's final journey, on the nearly 40- km stretch from Musoma airport to Butiama, first-time visitors were amazed to note that the road was not tarmacked, because Nyerere refused to have his village pampered. The original Nyerere house, with its fissured walls, is similar to thousands in the Tanzanian countryside.

In honouring the father of the Tanzanian nation after his death, then, we must be mindful of the modesty he espoused in life. Many heads of state on the continent have institutions named after them while they are still alive and in power, reflecting not only their vanity but also the poverty of their social vision.

Nyerere did not see the nation as an extension of his own ego or the Tanzanian people as his vassals. So the most fitting memorials he could have are not monuments to hubris but initiatives to restore dignity and hope to the poor.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Extract ID: 1451

See also

The East African,
Extract Author: Marjorie Oludhe-MacGoye
Extract Date: 1999 November 8

Edges - In Memory Of Mwalimu Julius Nyerere

Copyright (c) 1999 The East African. Distributed via Africa News Online (www.africanews.org)

You edged away, understated as always, softening the blow for people who pored over maps looking for Tanzania, Tanganyika, elusive homeland for so great a master.

Seven international borders, three shared lakes, haven for freedom fighters (even if they differed in opinion). Big ships seem to move along the streets of Dar. The aeons lie bared at Olduvai. The dusty pasture extends both sides of makeshift Customs sheds. Water keeps inland frontiers at a level.

You were always accessible, spry, smiling, till the worry lines showed when we presumed too much on your spare strength. You handed over power, but kept concern, which would spill outwards across rifts, borders, ideologies as water trickles downwards at Arusha and arid plains suck deep in search of such a blessing. You made this nation down to earth, not boasting of human primacy or mountain heights (let others explore these; we have our hoes). Cool over ethnic backgrounds, partisan chiefly in football, making Saba Saba the focus of our calendar and action, we took our price in village crop reports, co-operative progress, party structures growing from house to house, expanding limits. Bespectacled clerks hunch over their records German-style.

Rows of war graves still recall white dodging white amid the scything sisal. Mellifluous stories are enlarged on buses to suit the journey length, elaborate greetings pass between travellers. Upturned keels are set to right unhurriedly on sand as long tides rumble shoreward. Rosaries click like coffee cups on circuit, scholars debate pillars and tithes until the call to prayer, the old new left or new old Adam, now conceal the clove yet welcome spice of cash. Now definition is infringed by tears, dogma eroded by sympathy. Palms sway in doubt. Small troubled waves bite at the beach in Kigoma. Clouds lour as smoke over Moshi, obscuring the snow-cap, Musoma fears the weed, Mande the virus. Cattle stray out of order, tales are choked in the telling, guidelines rustle in trembling hands, the edges are frayed, the tideline swamped by influx as the world weeps quietly.

Extract ID: 1449

See also

The East African,
Extract Author: James Mpinga
Extract Date: 1999 November 8

Free Bread for Butiama Children Goes Too

Copyright (c) 1999 The East African. Distributed via Africa News Online (www.africanews.org).

There is little to show that Butiama, the birthplace of Julius Nyerere, raised one of Africa's greatest sons.

Mud huts surround the Catholic Church where Nyerere used to pray, and both the church and the mud huts tell a story. From the mud huts came the children who knew exactly when Mwalimu would have his breakfast, and dutifully came to share it with him every morning, and in the church their parents shared a common faith and prayer.

'At first, it was bread and butter for both Mwalimu and the kids. Soon I couldn't cope with the increasing numbers of children joining him for breakfast, so I downgraded it to porridge and kande (a boiled mixture of maize off the cob and pulses),' recalls Mwalimu's former housekeeper, Dorothy Musoga, 74, now living in retirement in Mwanza at a house built for her by Mwalimu.

I met Dorothy by sheer coincidence during Mwalimu's funeral at a pub put up by the Tanzania Peoples Defence Force (TPDF) building brigade at Butiama. Like all Mwalimu insiders, she was full of praise for the departed former president but, above all, worried about the future of his family and what she called Mwalimu's 'other children' who loved to share his breakfast.

'With Mwalimu dead, free breakfast for poor villagers will become a thing of the past,' Dorothy reflected, almost to herself, between sips of warm beer. The poverty of their parents remains, as does the lack of infrastructure at Butiama, which Mwalimu didn't want to transform into an edifice to be envied by Tanzania's 8,000 registered villages.

During the last week of October, vehicles thronged the dusty road to Butiama, which runs 11 kilometres from Makutano Juu along the Mwanza-Sirali highway. In fact, the road to Butiama was only made passable by last-minute grading. The net result, however, was a far from comfortable drive. The workmen had, in effect, only succeeded in increasing the circulation of dust.

The drive was a journey through abject deprivation and grinding poverty. On the way we saw small plots of cassava, much of it wilting under the searing heat. The land was mostly bare.

On Saturday, October 23, when Mwalimu was buried, Butiama may well have started to slip back into oblivion, to become what it once was, an unknown village in the middle of nowhere. With Tanzania's propensity for neglecting matters until they become a crisis, Butiama's transition from a collective shrine to an ordinary village is likely to be swift.

The process may, indeed, have started earlier, with Mwalimu's own house, which stands obscured from view by the relatively more affluent boma where the reigning patriarch of the Wazanaki, Chief Japhet Wanzagi, lives. By village standards, the chief's boma stands out as an island of prosperity in a sea of deprivation.

Many people take their first house as a proud possession, but the sewage system at the late Nyerere's first house bears marks of his self-denial. Children fetch water from a public standpipe and their mothers wash clothes in the open. The house itself could do with a fresh coat of paint. Nearby, and just as hidden, is the house where Nyerere's mother, the late Mugaya, lived. However, judging from the relatively wealthier homestead of the chief, Mwalimu was no more than a peasant - which the Tanzanian government would want the world to believe. The truth is that the former president was in fact a prince who simply chose to shun the trappings of privilege out of his own conviction.

The day after the burial, October 24, I arrived at the village just as villagers in their Sunday best were leaving church. They behaved as if nothing had happened, a stark contrast to the day before when some of them had broken down, unable to reconcile themselves to a future without Nyerere. I was now seeing a different scenario; a people resigned to their common fate.

Only one person, Dr Ebenezer Mwasha, still remained in the past, eleven days after it had all happened. Dr Mwasha is among the scores of professionals who worked closely with Mwalimu both as individuals and as public servants. 'I always looked forward to Mwalimu's homecoming. I never thought I would have the misfortune to receive his body one day,' Dr Mwasha said ruefully a day before Tanzanians and their well-wishers buried Mwalimu.

I met Dr Mwasha again the Sunday after the burial, and he was still unable to believe the obvious. He and his wife were waiting to see Mama Maria, Mwalimu's widow, before he could drive back to Machame in Kilimanjaro region, where he now runs a non-governmental organisation dealing with primary health care. He told me he had been helping Mwalimu to put up an appropriate sanitation and water supply system at his new house, the one the Tanzania Peoples Defence Forces (TPDF) had built for him.

'It is sad that the old man didn't have much time to stay in it,' Dr Mwasha said. Others at Butiama echoed his words. 'It was God's will, we cannot do anything' a primary school teacher, Gambiwa Masubo, said.

Gambiwa accosted me with poems for which he wanted me to find a publisher. 'Can The EastAfrican publish them, please?' he pleaded. Unfortunately, all them were in Kiswahili. In one of the poems, Gambiwa says Mwalimu has 'cleared the bush' so that the rest of Tanzania can move forward.

When I later visited the compound of Mwitongo, where Mwalimu was buried not far from the graves of his parents, only a few insiders and the late Nyerere's close family members had remained, among them his former press secretary Sammy Mdee and former aide-de-camp Philemon Mgaya. At the grave itself, TPDF soldiers from the army's building brigade were erecting a permanent structure.

The mood was still sombre, but noticeable was lighter than before. Some of the mourners took turns to have their pictures taken at the graveside. Was this some transition from mourning to a heritage industry? Now people had accepted the inevitable, Mwalimu's grave was already taking on the air of a world heritage site.

When Chairman Mao was asked what he thought about the French Revolution, a century and a half after it had taken place, he retorted: 'It's too early to say.'

Few in Tanzania can give a better answer about the impact of Nyerere's death. For the poor children of Butiama, however, the days of free breakfast with their beloved grandpa are gone. It is hard to imagine what will follow.

Extract ID: 1447

See also

The East African,
Extract Author: James Mpinga
Extract Date: 1999 November 8

In Him, Theatre and Botany Blended

Copyright (c) 1999 The East African. Distributed via Africa News Online (www.africanews.org).

William Shakespeare, the man Nyerere loved to translate, once described life as a fool that 'frets and struts upon the stage to be heard no more.' In Nyerere's death, Tanzanians too have found an eloquent soliloquy to express their deep loss: What next? It is as if a part of their very existence had died with him.

In his death, Nyerere defies Shakespeare's graphic description of mortality. Two aspects of Nyerere's public life, his intellectual pursuits and political leadership, stand out as icons of the Mwalimu legacy.

Prof Ali Mazrui, the Kenyan academic who disagreed with Mwalimu on practically everything - from the merits of Ujamaa to Mwalimu's vision of an East African federation, recently described Nyerere as 'one of the most eloquent voices of the 20th century a combination of deep intellect and high integrity.'

Mazrui also said that Mwalimu translated Shakespeare 'partly to demonstrate that Kiswahili was capable of carrying the complexities of a genius of another civilisation.' There was another reason, perhaps more engaging. Mazrui thinks Nyerere's translation of two of Shakespeare's plays (Julius Caesar and The Merchant of Venice) was done 'not because he loved Shakespeare less, but because he loved Kiswahili more.'

Like most East Africans, Mazrui believes that Nyerere's decision to make Kiswahili a national language deepened the country's national consciousness and cultural pride. Perhaps so, but this land of 120 ethnic groups and 164 dialects needed more than just a unifying language to stay at peace with itself and its neighbours.

To date, Tanzanians probably speak more dialects than all their immediate neighbours combined, so only history will decipher how Mwalimu's leadership infected everyone with such a massive dose of 'Tanzaphilia,' as Mazrui once described it.

Those close to him would attest that Nyerere was an avid student of botany, and that a disproportionately large part of his life evolved around trees and other gifts of Mother Nature than other intellectual pursuits.

Nyerere had the capacity to engage in the finer details of taxonomy, the biological classification of the plant kingdom, better than the average forester. As Chancellor of the Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) soon after his retirement, Mwalimu had this singular dream of establishing a botanical garden at SUA's Morogoro campus along the lines, if not on the scale, of the London Botanical Gardens at Kiew.

Extract ID: 1450

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The East African,
Extract Author: Paul Redfern
Extract Date: 1999 December 16

British Firm Wins Top Award for Kilimanjaro Airport

Copyright (c) 1999 The East African.

A British firm that has taken over the running of Kilimanjaro airport in Tanzania has won a top consultancy award for its 'groundbreaking project.'

CMS Cameron McKenna and Mott MacDonald took over the running of the airport after two years of protracted negotiations with the Dar-es- Salaam government, for which they received no payment.

Now the company plans to bring the airport up to international standards, with an injection of around Pounds7 million in cash which will be spent improving the existing infrastructure.

The British Consultants Bureau awarded CMS Cameron its 'Consultancy of the Year' award for winning the contract to operate the international airport for 25 years.

The company hopes that within a few years, large numbers of tourists will arrive at Kilimanjaro rather than Nairobi or Dar-es-Salaam because of its proximity to prime tourist sites such as Serengeti, the Ngorongoro crater and Manyara wildlife park as well as Mount Kilimanjaro itself.

The same British company is now bidding for the privatisation of Entebbe airport in Uganda as well as Cyprus main airport.

Extract ID: 1457

See also

The East African,
Extract Author: Alfred Ngotezi in Arusha and Joseph Mwamunyange in Dar es Salaam
Extract Date: 2000 April 30

Calm Returns to Bandit-Hit Border

published in Africa News Online

Dar-es-Salaam - Calm has been restored along the Kenya-Tanzania border following joint police operations by the two countries to contain the spate of attacks on tourists and other travellers by Somali 'shifta' bandits in northern Tanzania over the past three months.

The Arusha acting regional police commander, Mr. Wenceslaus Magoha, told The EastAfrican recently that the heavy presence of security forces in the area has calmed the situation.

'The situation in the most affected border districts of Monduli and Ngorongoro is now calm,' Magoha said, adding that no more incidents had been reported in the past month, during which police patrols had kept vigil.

The latest attack occurred on March 4, when seven Somali Bandits shot dead a Lutheran Church pastor, Mr. John Mejoel, at Malambo village in Ngorongoro district in Arusha. The pastor was in the company of four Europeans who were robbed of their personal effects and money.

The seven Somalis are said to have been seen in the three Maasai villages of Arashi, Panyinyi and Losoito before they killed the pastor.

The spokesman of the Tanzania police force, Mr. Aden Mwamunyange, last month said that the police had since arrested two local people alleged to be helping the bandits carry out their criminal activities. He identified the two as Lekingi Olekege and Majaliwa Madala.

Mr. Mwamunyange had told The EastAfrican in Dar es Salaam then that ignorance on the part of the local Maasai residents was being exploited by the bandits, who give them small gifts in return for their safe haven. Such gifts include small portable radio sets, batteries, beads, and watches.

He said awareness should be created among the local communities in the areas that have been affected by the banditry along the Tanzania-Kenya border. 'The Maasai should be made to understand that their nationhood is more important than the simple gifts they receive from perpetrators of banditry,' Mwamunyange said.

Last week, Mr. Magoha said that villagers were being trained in the use of firearms. However, he didn't say whether the arms would be issued to the villagers to defend themselves against future attacks.

'This is a security operation, we cannot disclose more details now, but the situation is very much under control now,' he said, adding that permanent police posts were being constructed at Malambo, Piyaya, Arashi in Ngorongoro district and Gerai Lumbwa in Monduli district.

The local Maasai are also alleged to be selling bullets and giving their traditional robes to the bandits so they could disguise themselves as Maasai herdsmen.

According to Mr. Mwamunyange, Tanzania's inspector general of police, Mr. Omari Mahita, last month met his Kenyan counterpart, commissioner of police Philemon Abong'o, to seek the collaboration of Kenya police to fight the Somali Bandits on the other side of the border.

The two police chiefs agreed that police in Kajiado district on the Kenyan side should undertake an operation to hunt down the bandits.

The governments of Kenya and Tanzania mounted joint operations and agreed to deploy their security personnel on either side of the common border.

The bandits are widely believed to be remnants of the disintegrated Somali army, and have repeatedly entered Tanzanian territory at night through Kenya via the Lake Natron-Namanga border stretch. Local business people are targeted for attack along with tourists.

Extract ID: 1497

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The East African,
Extract Author: Peter Munaita
Extract Date: 2000 July 14

$20m Required to Upgrade Six Tanzania Lodges for Tourism

via www.AllAfrica.com

A substantial investment estimated at $20 million will be required to upgrade six Tanzanian leisure lodges, which were privatised recently, to world class standards.

Industry sources say the sum is needed following years of neglect by the government-owned Tanzania Hotels Investment Ltd (TAHI), on whose behalf the hotels were being managed by the Accor Group of France.

The lodges were last week awarded to Mauritius-based Hotels and Lodges Ltd, which placed a top bid of $28 million, ahead of other leading international hotel groups. The Presidential Parastatal Sector Reform Commission chairman, Mr. John Rubambe, has confirmed the offer to Hotels and Lodges on behalf of the Tanzanian government.

The six hotels - Mt Meru, Ngorongoro Wildlife Lodge, Seronera Wildlife Lodge, Lobo Wildlife Lodge, Lake Manyara Lodge and Mafia Island Lodge - have a total bed capacity of 1,500.

They will give the new owners a 90 per cent market share of Tanzania's growing upmarket tourism sector.

TAHI has divested from the hotels under an ambitious privatisation exercise that will see the government cede interest in 395 enterprises. At the end of 1998, 270 ventures had been sold off, with the remainder targeted for the end of this year.

Bids for the hotels were floated in February and the exercise was supervised by a foreign financial consultant, HSBC Equator Bank plc, in order to enforce transparency. Previous privatisation programmes have been handled internally.

Out of 68 interested suitors, only 18 were prequalified on the basis of a solid track record in hotel management, sound financial position and environmental concerns.

Hotels and Lodges led four other firms that were eventually invited to bid, including Soba Management Ltd ($9.2 million for four properties), Coastal Travels ($1.2 million), World Wide Leisure Group ($2 million for two properties) and East African Holdings Ltd, associated with the Madhvani Group of Uganda, ($9.85 million for four properties).

Kenya's Tourist Promotion Services, who own the Serena hotels, opted out of the deal after being short-listed. Other contenders who fell by the wayside included Accor, Club Med, Conservation Group of South Africa and Golden Tulip Worldwide.

Hotels and Lodges is a sister company of Gulf Africa Petroleum Company (Gapco) of Mauritius, which took over the operations of Esso and Caltex in the region a few years ago, gaining access to 750 petrol stations and a vast storage network.

Gapco took over the operations of Agip in Sudan last year after the previous operators pulled out. The conglomerate has a presence in Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Zambia, Malawi, Mauritius and Sudan and is owned by the Kotak brothers, Dhiren and Yogish, Mauritian oil magnates.

Extract ID: 1516

See also

The East African,
Extract Author: Alfred Ngotezi Dar es Salaam
Extract Date: 2000 Oct 5

The Day Clinton Went Shopping in Arusha

The East African (Nairobi) via www.AllAfrica.com

World statesmen who have been hosted by the Arusha Cultural Heritage Centre include King Harold and Queen Sonja of Norway and their daughter Princess Martha Louise as well as South African President Thabo Mbeki and his wife.

Saifuddin Khanbhai, a jovial 34-year-old Tanzanian, has reason to feel on top of the world. On August 28, he became one of the few people in the world to host, albeit briefly, a reigning US president.

Khanbhai got the rare opportunity when American President William Jefferson Clinton paid a short visit to Arusha in Tanzania to witness the signing of a peace accord between Burundi's warring factions.

There was no confirmation of the planned presidential visit, ostensibly for security reasons, until a few minutes to 10 pm, Khanbhai recalls. All that evening, he was pacing up and down the lawns of his cultural centre. If the Burundi peace negotiations had not dragged on until late at night, Khanbhai says, perhaps Clinton would have arrived 'at a more conventional hour.' The American president personally held unscheduled lengthy talks with the Burundi belligerents.

Clinton's extended participation in the talks resulted in a rescheduling of his earlier programme, including a planned 15-minute private shopping session at Khanbhai's curio shop: the Cultural Heritage Centre on Arusha's Nairobi Road.

But to the delight of the young businessman, their friendly encounter lasted a full one hour and fifteen minutes as Khanbhai guided the president and his daughter around the cultural and entertainment sections of his centre.

As soon as Clinton arrived at the centre, Khanbhai presented him with a spear and a shield, the Maasai way of welcoming a respected leader.

The short traditional ceremony was performed in front of one of the tribal huts erected in the sprawling compound of the cultural centre. It was an amusing ceremony, Khanbhai recounts.

'But as warned earlier by security agents, we did not present the president with the spear, but only gave him a shield and gestured to the distant spear,' he says. But a jovial Clinton would not have it that way.

Grabbing the spear, he jokingly threatened his staff, saying, 'I'm the most dangerous person around now,' Khanbhai recalls.

From that moment onward, however, Clinton's itinerary became a private shopping visit, which saw the president and his daughter Chelsea visit every corner of the expansive centre. What impressed him most, says Khanbhai, is the fact that Clinton would stop from time to time to ask searching questions about the ways and values of different ethnic communities in Tanzania.

The American president was so moved by the cultural presentations, the proprietor says, that at one point he could not wait any longer: he joined in a traditional dance.

But where were the American security 'heavies' who had taken Arusha by storm with their sniffer dogs, one may ask. Khanbhai says the centre was swarming with security agents, but they were 'friendly and wanted to make the best of the occasion for us all.'

Indeed, Clinton went to the curio shop unaccompanied by local officials, in a deliberate relaxing of security measures to allow him some freedom to interact with people.

Clinton pulled quite a few surprises during the visit. For example, while earlier on at the Arusha International Conference Centre (AICC), he had not been allowed by his assistants to take a local drink, instead quenching his thirst with a special canned Coke from Airforce One, he readily sipped a glass of fresh juice offered by Khanbhai.

The American president bought art and craft items worth about $1,400 and was given some more as gifts by the Khanbhai family. He promised to display them for a week at a prominent spot in the White House and said that as soon as he moved out of the White House next year, he would be looking for more souvenirs and would contact Khanbhai.

Clinton's visit to the Cultural Centre was missed by the local press and remains a mystery even to the host. 'I certainly would not have dreamt of inviting him,' he says.

Khanbhai says although US First Lady Hillary Clinton and her daughter Chelsea have visited Arusha before, they did not visit the Cultural Centre. Former US Foreign Secretary James Baker visited the centre twice while on a private hunting safari.

Other world statesmen who have been hosted by Khanbhai include King Harold and Queen Sonja of Norway and their daughter Princess Martha Louise as well as South African President Thabo Mbeki and his wife.

What attracts world leaders to the Arusha Cultural Heritage Centre?

Most visitors interested in Tanzania's cultural heritage will look for a place where the past and present of the country's 120-plus tribes can be viewed in a single compound. Khanbhai's project is a clear manifestation of the need for tourism investors in the country to be creative. Beginning with the nearby Maasai and other tribes close to Arusha town in northern Tanzania, he has set out to extend his coverage to other ethnic groups in the country.

The soft-spoken proprietor is also launching an e-commerce enterprise. Customers from all over the world will be able to place orders online for various works of art.

Apart from displaying and storing Tanzania's cultural heritage, the curio shop sells carvings, gemstones, artefacts, clothing and books. The business employs 68 people.

Khanbhai was born in 1966 in Muheza, in the northeastern region of Tanga. He went to school in Tanga and Arusha before going for his A- level education in England. Despite being selected to pursue medicine, he was attracted to the arts and returned home to pursue his studies.

Khanbhai, a Tanzanian of Asian origin, says his immediate business partner is his wife of 11 years, Zahra. Starting with a small store near Clock Tower in Arusha, Khanbhai expanded and opened several other stores around the town. Construction on the Cultural Centre began in 1990, a task that took him four years.

The Clock Tower in Arusha, incidentally, at the halfway point between Cape Town and Cairo.

On the future of tourism in Tanzania, Khanbhai says the industry has a lot of potential but that institutional red tape is stifling its growth.

Khanbhai is critical of the policy of imposing Value Added Tax (VAT) on works of art, proposing that such payments made by tourists should be refunded at the time of departure. He indeed goes on to suggest that the tax be waived altogether.

It may not be a bad idea, after all, for the establishment to listen to a young businessman who has just had the rare honour of hosting the most powerful president in the world.

Extract ID: 1534

external link

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The East African,
Extract Author: John Mbaria
Extract Date: February 4, 2002

Game 'carnage' in Tanzania alarms Kenya

KENYA COULD end up losing 80 per cent of its wildlife species in protected areas bordering Tanzania to hunters licensed by the Tanzanian government.

The hunters have been operating for about a decade in a section of the migratory route south from Kenya to Tanzania's Serengeti National Park.

They shoot large numbers of animals as they move into the park during the big zebra and wildebeest migration between July and December.

There are fears that the Maasai Mara National Park and most of Kenya's wildlife areas bordering Tanzania could lose much of their wildlife population, threatening the country's Ksh20 billion ($256 million) a year tourism industry.

Kenya banned Hunting in 1977 but the sport is legal in Tanzania, where it is sold as "Safari Hunting."

"The product sold is really the experience of tracking and killing animals, the services that go with this and the prestige of taking home the trophies," says a policy document from the Tanzania Wildlife Corporation (Tawico).

Tanzania wildlife officials said wild animals that cross over from Kenya are hunted along their migratory routes in the Loliondo Game Controlled Area in Ngorongoro district of Arusha region, 400 km northwest of Arusha. The area was designated by the British colonial power as a sports Hunting region for European royalty.

The officials said the area is now utilised by a top defence official from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), trading as Ortelo Business Company (OBC), through a licence issued in 1992 by former Tanzania President Ali Hassan Mwinyi. The permit allows the company to hunt wild game and trap and take some live animals back to the UAE.

Safari Hunting earns big money for the Tanzanian government, which charges each hunter $1,600 a day to enter the controlled area.

A hunter is also required to pay fees for each kill, with an elephant costing $4,000, a lion and a leopard $2,000 each and a buffalo $600. The document has no quotation for rhinos.

The sport is organised in expeditions lasting between one and three weeks in the five Hunting blocks of Lake Natron Game Controlled Area, Rungwa Game Reserve, Selous Mai, Selous U3 and Selous LU4.

For the period the hunters stay in each of the Hunting blocks, they pay between $7,270 and $13,170 each. Part of this money is shared out among the many Ujamaa villages, the local district councils and the central government.

Although Tawico restricts the number of animals to be culled by species, poor monitoring of the activities has meant indiscriminate killing of game.

"Some of the animals are snared and either exported alive or as meat and skins to the United Arab Emirates and other destinations," local community members told The EastAfrican during a recent trip to the area.

They claimed the hunters were provided with "blank Hunting permits," giving them discretion over the number of animals to be hunted down. Kenya wildlife conservation bodies are concerned that big game Hunting in the Ngorongoro area is depleting the wildlife that crosses the border from Kenya.

"Kenya is losing much of its wildlife to hunters licensed by the Tanzanian government," the chairman of the Maasai Environmental and Resource Coalition (MERC), Mr Andrew ole Nainguran, said. MERC was set up in 1999 to sensitise members of the Maasai community in Kenya and Tanzania to the benefits of wildlife conservation.

Kenya and Tanzania wildlife authorities have regularly discussed the problem of security and poaching in Arusha. However, the KWS acting director, Mr Joe Kioko, said legalised Hunting has never been discussed in any of the meetings.

The hunters are said to fly directly from the UAE to the area using huge cargo and passenger planes which land on an all-weather airstrip inside the OBC camp. The planes are loaded with sophisticated Hunting equipment, including four-wheel drive vehicles, weapons and communication gadgets.

On their way back, the planes carry a variety of live animals, game trophies and meat. Employees at the camp said the hunters are sometimes accompanied by young Pakistani and Filipino women.

The International Fund for Animal Welfare regional director, Mr Michael Wamithi, said Kenya and Tanzania should discuss the negative impact of the sport Hunting on Kenya's conservation efforts.

"The two neighbours have a Cross-Border Law Enforcement Memorandum of Understanding where such issues could be dealt with."

Kenya seems to be alone in adhering to strict protection of wildlife, a policy famously demonstrated by President Daniel arap Moi's torching of ivory worth $760,000 in 1989.

Although the country has made significant progress in securing parks from poachers, it is yet to embrace a policy on "consumptive utilisation" of animals advocated by Kenyan game ranchers and Zimbabwe, which wants the international trade ban on ivory lifted.

The animals in the Hunting block have been reduced to such an extent that the OBC camp management has been spreading salt and pumping water at strategic places to attract animals from Serengeti and the outlying areas.

"We will not have any animals left in the vicinity unless the Hunting is checked," a local community leader, Mr Oloomo Samantai ole Nairoti, said, arguing that the area's tourism economy was being jeopardised.

Mysterious fires in the area to the south of Serengeti have also forced animals to seek refuge in the Hunting blocks.

Locals said the camp is exclusively patronised by Arab visitors. The camp is usually under tight security by Tanzanian police.

The permit granted by Mr Mwinyi has raised controversy in Tanzania and was at one stage the subject of a parliamentary probe committee because members of UAE's royal family were not entitled to the Hunting rights in the country.

"Only presidents or monarchs are entitled to hunt in the area," an official said, adding that the UAE royal family had abused their permit by killing animals outside their given quotas or specified species.

The government revoked the licence in 1999 after realising that OBC was airlifting many wild animals to the Middle East, only to renew the permit in 2000. The current permit runs until 2005.

The withdrawal of the permit followed the recommendations of a 1994 parliamentary probe commission set up to "investigate the Hunting behaviour" of the UAE company.

Sources said permanent Hunting is prohibited in the Loliondo Game Controlled Area for fear of depleting animals from the four parks, which host the bulk of the region's tourist resorts.

The area is in a natural corridor where wild animals cross while roaming between the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Serengeti National Park in Tanzania and Maasai Mara Game Reserve and Amboseli National Park in Kenya.

The late founding president of Tanzania, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, took to himself the powers to issue Hunting permits for Loliondo when Tanzania became independent in 1961, but he never granted any.

After obtaining the permit, the UAE hunters created Hunting blocks in the area covering over 4,000 sq km.

No other Hunting companies have been granted permits, the source said.

The UAE royal family has donated passenger aircraft to the Tanzania army and a number of vehicles to the Wildlife Division.

The 1974 Wildlife Act set up five categories of wildlife conservation areas.

These are national parks, game reserves, partial game reserve, open areas and Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Hunting is prohibited in the national parks and Ngorongoro Conservation Area, but allowed in other areas during the seasonal Hunting period from July to December.

Additional reporting by Apolinari Tairo in Dar es Salaam

Extract ID: 3554

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The East African,
Extract Author: John Mbaria
Extract Date: December 2, 2002

No Hunting Without Ujamaa Consent - Study

The East African (Nairobi) Posted to the web December 4, 2002

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Unlike in Kenya, the law in Tanzania promotes commercial wildlife utilisation activities such as safari Hunting and actually prohibits photographic tourism in areas declared as Hunting zones.

Under the WCA of 1974, the wildlife division can only regulate the capture, Hunting and commercial photography of wildlife.

The report adds that the director of wildlife can issue Hunting licences on village land, but he "does not have the power to give a hunter or Hunting company authority to hunt on village land without the permission of the village government."

On their part, the licensed persons are expected to seek the permission of the village government before engaging in any Hunting. However, reports indicate that the practice of safari Hunting has so far ignored this law. The report says that most Hunting companies put up facilities on village lands without the permission of the village government and the respective village assemblies.

The report gives the example of the Loliondo GCA, in Loliondo division of Ngorongoro district, where a Hunting company associated with a United Arab Emirates minister, "has built an airstrip and several large houses without the permission of the relevant village governments."

"Such actions are contrary to the VLA which, under section 17, requires any non-village organisation that intends to use any portion of the village land to apply for that land to the village council, which will then forward that application and its recommendation for approval or rejection to the Commissioner for Land."

In January, The EastAfrican published an exclusive story on the manner with which the Hunting company conducts Hunting activities in Loliondo.

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Extract ID: 3722
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